Image from TERRA
Fri, 14 Sep 2018 01:33 EDT

NASA's MISR instrument captures Hurricane Florence just off the East Coast. Data from two of its nine cameras is combined to show the storm in 3D

Image from TERRA
Mon, 27 Aug 2018 16:33 EDT

For the first time ever, measurements from NASA Earth-observing research satellites are being used to help combat a potential outbreak of life-threatening cholera. Humanitarian teams in Yemen are targeting areas identified by a NASA-supported project that precisely forecasts high-risk regions based on environmental conditions observed from space.

Image from TERRA
Fri, 24 Aug 2018 20:50 EDT

Instruments on NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites were watching as Hurricane Lane -- a category 2 storm as of Friday, Aug. 24 -- made its way toward Hawaii.

Author: Tassia Owen

NASA’s MISR Spots Alaskan Volcano’s Latest Eruption

The tiny Aleutian island of Bogoslof in Alaska, erupting regularly since December 2016, produced fresh activity on Sunday, May 28, 2017. Bogoslof is a stratovolcano fueled by the subduction of the Pacific Plate under the North American Plate and forms part of the larger Aleutian Arc, which includes more than 60 volcanoes on the Aleutian Islands and the Aleutian Range on the Alaska mainland. Previous to its recent period of activity, Bogoslof had last erupted in 1992, and its above-water surface area was a mere 0.11 square miles (0.29 square kilometers). As of March 11, the most recent data available, the area of the island had tripled to 0.38 square miles (0.98 square kilometers). The event on May 28 produced an ash cloud that reached 40,000 feet (12 km) in altitude, causing the Alaskan Volcano Observatory to issue a red alert for air travel in the area. Volcanic ash can cause major damage to aircraft engines, and the region is close to several major air routes between North America and Asia.

On May 28, 2017, at approximately 2:23 p.m. local time, NASA’s Terra satellite passed over Bogoslof, less than 10 minutes after the eruption began. MISR has nine cameras that view Earth at different angles. It takes slightly less than seven minutes for all nine cameras to view the same location on Earth. On the left, an animation made from the images from the nine MISR cameras, captured between 2:19 and 2:26 p.m., demonstrates how the angled views give a glimpse of the underside of the growing plume of volcanic ash, showing the eruption column widening into the cloud at the top.

Data from MISR’s nine cameras can also be used to calculate the height of the plume, based on the apparent movement of the cloud from one camera to another. On the right, a map of plume height is plotted over the downward-looking image. The top of the cloud was approximately 10,000 feet (3 kilometers) high at this time. Below the image is a scatterplot of the heights, with blue points representing heights corrected by the northwesterly winds reported by the Alaskan Volcano Observatory during the eruption, and red points representing uncorrected heights. Lower points at either side of the plume represent retrievals of the eruption column.

These data were captured during Terra orbit 92786. The stereoscopic analysis was performed using the MISR INteractive eXplorer (MINX) software tool, which is publicly available through the Open Channel Foundation at https://www.openchannelsoftware.com/projects/MINX. Other MISR data are available through the NASA Langley Research Center; for more information, go to https://eosweb.larc.nasa.gov/project/misr/misr_table. MISR was built and is managed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. The Terra spacecraft is managed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The MISR data were obtained from the NASA Langley Research Center Atmospheric Science Data Center in Hampton, Virginia. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/LaRC/JPL-Caltech, MISR Team, article by Abbey Nasten

NASA’s MISR Views America’s National Parks in 3-D

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NASA  Image from NASA/GSFC/LaRC/JPL-Caltech, MISR Team. Originally posted on JPL’s photojournal.

 

Just in time for the U.S. National Park Service’s Centennial celebration on Aug. 25, NASA’s Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument aboard NASA’s Terra satellite is releasing four new anaglyphs that showcase 33 of our nation’s national parks, monuments, historical sites and recreation areas in glorious 3D.

Shown in the annotated image are Lewis and Clark National Historic Park, Mt. Rainier National Park, Olympic National Park, Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve, San Juan Island National Historic Park, North Cascades National Park, Lake Chelan National Recreation Area, and Ross Lake National Recreation Area (also Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, administered by the U.S. Forest Service).

MISR views Earth with nine cameras pointed at different angles, giving it the unique capability to produce anaglyphs, stereoscopic images that allow the viewer to experience the landscape in three dimensions. The anaglyphs were made by combining data from MISR’s vertical-viewing and 46-degree forward-pointing camera. You will need red-blue glasses in order to experience the 3D effect; ensure you place the red lens over your left eye. The images have been rotated so that north is to the left in order to enable 3D viewing because the Terra satellite flies from north to south. All of the images are 235 miles (378 kilometers) from west to east.

View the rest of the 33 national parks, monuments, historical sites and recreation areas in these other 3 images provided by MISR.

Southwest Splendor

Wyoming Wonders

California Dreaming

Long Smoke Plumes from California’s Destructive Blue Cut Fire Spotted by NASA’s MISR

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NASA  Image from NASA/GSFC/LaRC/JPL-Caltech, MISR Team. Originally posted on JPL’s photojournal.

On Aug. 16, 2016, at around 10:30 a.m., a brush fire ignited in the Cajon Pass east of Los Angeles, just to the west of Interstate 15. Within a matter of hours, extreme temperatures, high winds and low humidity allowed the fire to spread rapidly, burning through brush left tinder-dry by years of drought. Firefighters quickly responded, ordering the evacuation of about 83,000 people in and around the Cajon Pass, Wrightwood, Lytle Creek, Oak Hills and surrounding areas. An as-yet uncounted number of homes and structures have burned, and Interstate 15 remains closed to downed power lines and barrier damage. By Aug. 17, the fire had expanded to more than 30,000 acres and remains zero percent contained as some 1,300 firefighters continue to battle to save homes and evacuate residents.

The Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument aboard NASA’s Terra satellite passed over the region on Aug. 17 around 11:50 a.m. PDT and captured this natural-color image from MISR’s 70-degree forward-viewing camera, which covers an areas about 257 miles (414 kilometers) wide. The oblique view angle makes the smoke more apparent than it would be in a more conventional vertical view. The Los Angeles metropolitan area is the large gray area on the coast in the center of the image. Three plumes from the Blue Cut Fire are clearly visible in the mountains to the north. This oblique view also shows an enormous cloud of smoke spreading northeastward over a significant portion of eastern California and Nevada. This smoke probably originated from the fire as it consumed almost 20,000 acres on the evening of the 16th and traveled north overnight.

Also visible from this oblique view is considerable haziness filling California’s Central Valley, to the northwest of the Blue Cut Fire. This haziness is most likely due to smoke from several other fires burning in California, including the Soberanes Fire near Monterey, the Clayton Fire that has destroyed 175 structures north of San Francisco, the Chimney Fire and the Cedar Fire, which is visible in the image in the southern Sierra Nevada. The total number of acres burned in California this year has tripled in just the past week.

Severe 2015 Indonesian Fire Season Linked to El Niño Drought

Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, September 2011. Photo by Rini Sulaiman for CIFOR Center for International Forestry Research

Data from five instruments on the NASA Aura, Terra, and Aqua satellites tracked active fires, carbon monoxide, and aerosol optical depth in the atmosphere” in Indonesia. July to October was especially dry because of the 2015-16 El Niño. The abundance of dry fuel contributed to sparking a severe fire season with widespread effects on air quality. Learn about more on nasa.gov.

Deadly Fires Engulfing Madeira seen by NASA’s MISR

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The Multi-angle Imaging Spectrodiometer (MISR) instrument on NASA’s Terra satellite acquired an image of a large wildfire on the Island of Madeira, part of the autonomous region of Portugal.  Madeira’s capital city, Funchal, also caught fire, burning homes and leading to the evacuation of a thousand people. Read more on JPL’s Photojournal.